And boy, are the panties atwist. Perry must be interpreted literally, they insist. Not figuratively, That's not allowed.
Look, Perry is not circumspect. He's not an "iron fist in velvet glove" guy. He's just an iron fist guy. He doesn't pause and carefully chose words in order to find clever ways to say nasty things that don't sound nasty at first. Many are sure this is a bug. But how many regular folks will find it to be a refreshing feature?
Ordinarily, I don't go down the road of criticizing elitism. I usually find it to be a dumb anti-intellectual meme favored by know-nothings.
But when it comes to political speech and analyzing it, that's overwhelmingly the province of the elite. Well educated folks who are all wonky about politics, Like me, and like the posters I talk with at Donklephant and Rise of The Center.:
- People who have big vocabularies.
- People who enjoy reading lots of stuff, sometimes high-brow and with sophisticated analysis.
- People who then enjoy writing their opinions carefully and at length, using just the right words.
Such folks have a built-in bias for taking care with how one expresses one's views. So they generally fall right into line with interpreting quickly expressed ideas literally when they should quite obviously be interpreted figuratively.
Time after time after time, I have seen that the regular non-wonk world has little patience with such nonsense. And I agree with them. How is it that so many well-educated hard-thinking Americans has developed this blind spot for the difference between literal and figurative expression? Maybe the only way to rid them of this blind spot is to just kick their asses really really until it goes away. Figuratively of course, not literally, for the dense among you.
Oh, and just let me add, to fend off ill-targeted drive-by comments: I voted for Obama in 2008 and plan to vote for him again in 2012. I don't like or support Rick Perry.